Types of Editing – Line Editing vs Copy Editing vs Proofreading

Writers feel relieved once they have completed the writing of their manuscript. The true struggle begins with the post-writing phase. This blog will discuss post-writing copyediting vs proofreading, and all your questions will be answered.

 Line Editing vs Copy Editing vs Proofreading:

This can be decided based on either the importance or the chronology. Line editing is the first stage in chronological order once the manuscript is final. Line editing and copy editing both comes in the editing stage. Inline editing, the editor focuses on the writer’s content, style, and language, whereas the copy editor focuses the manuscript on a technical level. Their prime responsibility is to review the clarity and readability of the story.

Moreover, they focus on a story’s grammar, structure, punctuation, and technical aspects. Proofreading is always the last stage when your book is finally ready for publishing. Proofreader thoroughly checks the structure and flow of the story before publishing the book. It is the last step of defense against the errors in the text.

For instance, you are an author who has finished writing a manuscript and now moving forward with copy editing and proofreading before your manuscript turns into a published book. What do you think copyeditors do to your manuscript. Let’s have a look over it.

Line Editing:

The line editor’s core job is to be attentive to the writer’s unique writing style. This is why this editing is sometimes known as stylistic editing. His approach towards the editing is as a careful reader who has the responsibility to maintain the book’s consistency. He works line-to-line, working on the structure of the language to maintain readability and clarity.


What does copywriting means?

A copywriter’s basic responsibility is to check the book with a microscope to make the necessary changes to rectify the errors of grammar, punctuation, composition, style, etc. It is a checkpoint where all the minor and major errors are rectified.

What Does a Copy Editor Do?

The responsibilities of a copywriter depend on the amount you have spent on them. What level of work you have demanded from them. How much research is required in the services and the number of words involving in the manuscript? The edited copy of your manuscript is a rough draft of all the changes that the editor has made. These changes may include; inconsistencies in the content style, use of either American or British English, formatting errors, recommendations to enhance the character development, etc. If you opt for the high-quality copyeditor, they may include the services of;

  • They do fact-check in the entire manuscript to protect the writers if they claim that the evidence can not back up.
  • Identify all loose-ends of the writing
  • Creates consistency in the writing style and removes the identifiable differences between author and ghostwriters.

Copyediting VS Editing?

Usually, people have the perception that copyediting and editing are the same, but actually, they are not. Copyediting is not a “just by the way” kind of technical jargon some nerds make. It has a very useful and productive meaning. Editing is an umbrella, and copyediting is a term that is part of editing. Apart from copyediting and proofreading, the editing process includes developmental editing, line editing, and structural editing. The approach of editing is what makes an editor different from one another.

Is Copy Editing One Word?

Generally, copy editing is two separate words but is acceptable as one word, especially in the writing industry. The word “copy” means the written account. The term is often used for news, and the editor means who edits the written copy. Combined, the person who edits the written accounts of news or journals is known as a copy editor.


Once the manuscript is completed, a few quality control checkpoints are mandatory before the manuscript is converted into a published book. Proofreading is the last checkpoint in the book editing quality control process. There is a major difference between copyeditors and proofreaders. A proofreader will not check the work on the level where copy editors do. The proofreaders’ job is to thoroughly check the manuscript and point out the wider errors that a copywriter might miss. They check the grammatical errors, spelling, punctuations, formatting it to the left, font usage in the book before it is sent for publishing.

Hiring a copyeditor or a proofreader is no act of shame in the writing industry. The writer’s job is to concentrate on the story. If the writer becomes his copyeditor and proofreader, he will not finish his book on time, which might also affect the story he wants to share with the world. Stopping by every sentence while writing can be a bad sign for a book. The polishing of a book is not an author’s job to do. Unwavering concentration is significant for a writer to establish productive results.

Hiring a proofreader:

Proofreaders are considered guardian angels for the authors because they save them from embarrassment after their book is published. In terms of communication, the copy editors send back the draft via email, highlighting all the required changes. Nothing in a manuscript can be changed without the author’s approval. All the editing tools are well acquainted with authors. The entire process is done with a mutual discussion between the parties, and the communication is done via email, conference calls, or physical meetings.

On the other hand, the proofreaders are usually not connected with the authors. They are not even aware of the email addresses. The proofreader checks the work in grammar, punctuation, spellings, etc., and removes minor errors before publication.

Difference between copyediting and proofreading:

There is a very fine line define between copyediting and proofreading. The copy editors put in the work with a microscope to identify the flaws in the plot, structure, and flow of the story and the content style. In contrast, the proofreaders’ job is to review the work thoroughly and identify the errors in grammar, spelling, punctuation, etc. The work of proofreaders is depended on their experience, they have come across many rough drafts, and they have the skillset to make it perfect for publication.

Copyediting and proofreading both are essential elements of book-writing before publishing them. None of the steps should be missing because it may affect the results in terms of sales of the book. Big publishing houses, copyediting, and proofreading are both available services because they hire employees with the skillset of quality control processes in book editing services.

Grammarly as proofreader or not?

If you consider Grammarly to be your spellchecker, you are partially correct. There are certain quality control standards in the writing industry that needs to be maintaining before they are out for publishing and available for the readers in the market. Grammarly can not fulfil these standards; human intervention by some experiences professionals is require and consider the mandatory part.

Do I Need a Proofreader Even After Editing?

Due to a restricted budget, self-publishing authors even opt only for proofreaders. This affects the quality of writing and may disturb the sales of your book. Naturally, everyone aims to save money and time, but they don’t understand that investing in the quality of their book will result in long-term benefits. The assistance by the professionals can save you more time and money, and it is like a long-term investment.

Proofreading is the part that is mandatory, and you cannot survive in the writing industry without it. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

It’s A Wrap:

This article will clear your confusion between different types of editing. This editing includes line editing, copy editing, and proofreading. It is mandatory to maintain these quality control standards that can enhance and increase the value of your book in the market.

Related Articles

Back to top button